My dad thinks I’m a hairdresser and I don’t know why.

My father is under the impression that I possess the ability to cut hair like a trained professional. This could not be farther from the truth. I have never had a course, or even watched so much as a youtube video on how to cut hair. At my last job I wasn’t even allowed to have scissors at my desk, because I am super accident prone. The last time I used scissors to cut valentines, I ended up with a gash in the palm of my hand.

But for whatever reason, my father thinks that I can give a decent haircut. It might be because my sibling competition consisted of my middle sister, who gave the cat a terrible groom job trying to get out chunks of matted fur (the cat looked like it had gone through a lawnmower), or my youngest sister who was just too busy with multiple jobs. But for the past few years, my dad has showed up sporadically on my front porch, scissors and clippers in hand, and said “I need a haircut.”

My father also doesn’t have a lot of hair. The crown of his head is bald, it’s just the lower portions on the side and back of his head that need trimming. There are a couple lone strands on the top of his head, like sprigs poking their way through snow, so I trim those too. I kind of just mimic what I’ve seen my hairstylist do, and pull up pieces, snipping away. I know my hairstylist has a method, I’m just trying to make sure I get everything remotely symmetrical. After I’ve cut away most of the growth, I use the clippers to try and get everything to look more smooth, and less like a five-year-old trying to trim her own bangs.

When it’s done, I call it the Julius Caesar, even though I don’t think he was bald. It just reminds me of some kind of Roman patrician, like all he needs is a toga and some laurel leaves and he’s set. I think the funniest part is that my dad usually tips me (even though I don’t charge him for this amateur attempt), either in groceries or cash, and if he went to even the cheapest licensed hairstylist he would have paid less and looked so much more professional. There’s something about the fact that my father for whatever reason, thinks that I can give him a haircut that he can go in public with, makes me feel like I can do absolutely anything*.

(*Note: Except cut hair – I am not under the impression I can actually do that. Yet.)

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